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Begum Samru's Household

February 29, 1820
Muhammad A'zam
Family Pictures
Akbar Shah II 1806–1837




Begum Samru's Household by Muhammad A'zam circa 1820 

Begum Samru and her household, by Muhammad A`zam. This crowded scene shows the ruler of Sardhana, Begum Samru (1751-1836) and her extensive household, receiving four guests who are seated in a row in the centre. Every figure has been named in a small inscription, including the four visitors (three nawabs and a bakshi or paymaster), who have been linked with the Mughal court of Akbar Shah II in Delhi. The Begum's international household included David Dyce-Samru (sitting on her right), to whom she would bequeath most of her wealth, and John Thomas (beside Dyce-Samru), an Irish-Indian officer in her army, who had been adopted into her court in 1795. Painting, colours on paper, Begum Samru and her extensive household receiving four guests, all figures' names inscribed in ink, artist's name Muhammad A`zam inscribed in lower left corner, possibly Delhi, India, 1820-1825.

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Ismail Mazari

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Very good information.


The Mughal Images immediately took a much greater interest in realistic portraiture than was typical of Persian miniatures. Animals and plants were the main subject of many miniatures for albums and were more realistically depicted. To upload your images click here.

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